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Jun Gao

Table Tennis

Jun Gao
  • 1992
  • 2000
  • 2004
  • 2008
  • 2012
Height: 5' 6"
Year of Birth: 1969
Birthplace: Baoding, Hebei, China
Hometown: Covina, CA
Education: East China University of Science and Technology
Major: Economics
Club: Gao Jun Table Tennis Club
Style of Play: Offense
Grip: Penholder
Sponsors: Butterfly and NYAC
Blade and Rubber: Butterfly Matsushita/Challenger

PERSONAL

Jun Gao started playing table tennis when she was five. Her father was a table tennis fan, so he sent her to one of the best athletic schools in China. She thanks her father for this, saying without him, she wouldn't have had her table tennis career. In China, athletic schools are special schools for training future professional athletes. Students in Gao's school majored in different fields, including table tennis, gymnastics, and martial arts. Her school was a boarding school. Every day, after academic classes, she would train for several hours. Her first lesson in table tennis was to learn how to use a paddle to bounce the ball against the wall without letting the ball drop. It was a great exercise for steadiness and control.

After that, she went on to tables to play, and older students would practice with younger students. Later on, she began competing with other athletic schools in the same province. After winning a silver medal in the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games for her native country China, Gao has since become a U.S. citizen. Gao is currently studying economic trade at East China University of Science and Technology in Shanghai, China while she trains. She likes love songs, 007 and Batman movies and to reminisce about her father taking her to table tennis school as a child in China.

Competition Record:

2012 US Olympic Trials - Qualifier
2012 World Team Member
2011 US Women's Doubles Champion
2009 US Women's Singles, Doubles, Mixed Champion
2008 Member of the United States Olympic Team for Beijing, China
2007 Pan American Games - gold medal (women's single and team)
2004 US Women's Singles, Doubles, Mixed Champion
2004 Olympic Games - 30th place (women's singles)
2003 Pan American Games - gold medal (women's singles and doubles)
2003 World Championships - quarter-finalist (women's singles)
1999 Pan American Games - gold medal (women's singles and doubles)
1996 - 2002 U.S. Women's Singles and Doubles Champion
1994 - 1995 Highest world ranking: #3
1994 U.S. Open Women's Singles Champion
1993 World Championships - 3rd place (women's singles)
1992 Barcelona Olympic Games (competed for China with Chen Zihe) - silver medal
1991 World Champion (women's doubles with Chen Zihe)

Hobbies: "I like reading, watching movies, watching TV, and singing. Of course, I like shopping, too."

Most memorable career experience:
"I played tournaments around the world for many years, and interesting stories happened almost everywhere. But my most memorable time was when Chen Zihe and I defeated Deng Yaping and Qiao Hong in the 1991 World Championships. That was quite exciting, because we had never defeated Deng Yaping and Qiao Hong before."

Greatest influences:
Her father and her family

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